Set Your Own Schedule

This post is Day #12 in the 31 Days to a Better Work + Life Balance series.

I think one of the fun parts about working from home is that you get to make your own schedule. But even this stresses us out sometimes, right? 

I remember when I used to work a typical 8-5 job, my co-worker and I would joke that working from 9am-1pm everyday would be the perfect hours. We always felt like the afternoon was forced, pretending to be productive and wishing we could take a nap. 

Maybe we were just lazy back then but I think we were actually on to something. There are definitely hours that we are more efficient and creative. Limiting our work time can even make us more purposeful and refreshed. There's some wisdom in setting the best times to work and making time for rest.

Get Out of the 8-5 Mindsest

I know a lot of people who work at home and then feel guilty or frustrated if they don't have that full 8-5 day at the desk. The tension is especially true of moms who work/blog with kids at home or something similar. If something needs your attention during the day and you need to rearrange, it's okay.

You really CAN work at a different time - don't feel guilty for that!

Or maybe you have a day job but want to eventually working for yourself, work an hour or two each night or early mornings so you can get started. The 8-5 workday is not some magical time slot that makes us successful.

When Are You Most Productive

Some people are all about rising early and tackling the to-do list before the sun comes up. Others are most creative after dark and find their best inspiration at midnight.  I usually work mornings, but recently started adding Sunday evenings to my schedule since this is a key time when no one needs me. My kids are in bed and my husband likes to just have alone chill time to prepare himself for the work week. I get a lot done during these 3-4 hours because I just think more clearly at night when the house is quiet. 

What hours make the most sense for your phase of life right now? Think about when you get the best ideas and make that a part of your weekly schedule.

Know When To Put It Down

Work can be addicting when you're doing what you love. It can be so easy to look at your to-do list and decide you have to get to it "right now." Or it can be tempting to work when there's "nothing else" going on at home. But I've been really challenged lately to put work down at a set time.

There's always something that could be going on at home.

You could be on the floor with your kids playing. You could be sitting on your teen's bed chatting. You and your husband could be cuddled up on the couch and talking about old times. You could be out with friends or going for a run. You may not always have these moments to soak up so it's really important to decide when work can wait for tomorrow.

Put the phone away. Don't check emails. Just be. Rest.